Montgomery County Marks Two Year Anniversary of Green Business Certification Program
Montgomery County is celebrating the two year anniversary of the Green Business Certification Program, launched through a partnership between the Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection, the Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce (MCCC) and Montgomery College. Thirty-five diverse organizations have been certified so far, including a bank, IT consultant, religious institution, beverage company, orthodontist, furniture company, international hotel chain, law firm, accounting firms, non-profit organizations, an architect, engineering firm and defense contractor.The Green Business Certification Program helps County businesses by providing them with a “greenprint” for introducing sustainability into their day-to-day operations and supply chain decisions. Organizations that embrace green practices enhance environmental quality while promoting economic development. “Montgomery County is doing its part to spark the transition to a sustainable and green future through the Green Business Certification Program,” said Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett. “Businesses are doing their part by pursuing the Green Business Certification -- and I thank these leaders for their vision. They recognize that from an economic standpoint, environmental stewardship and innovation are becoming key drivers of financial success. I hope their example will inspire many other organizations in the County to become certified green businesses.”To be a certified green business, an organization must demonstrate its commitment to environmental stewardship, conservation of energy and water, carbon footprint reduction, waste reduction and recycling and environmentally responsible purchasing. “We embrace sustainable business practices because they provide our members a competitive advantage,” said Gigi Godwin, President and CEO of the Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce. “Moreover, companies recognize that aligning values, such as environmental stewardship, with business operations helps to reduce risk and attract and retain the best and the brightest. We are delighted to be a partner in the Green Business Certification Program.” Montgomery College provides on-going courses to assist businesses in “going green” so they can get certified. While not required for certification, many businesses have found the courses to be extremely helpful in getting started.“We understand that businesses are investing significant time in going green,” said Dr. DeRionne Pollard, President of Montgomery College. “Green Business Certification can also open up new business opportunities. The College helps to empower businesses by providing them with a clear path forward so that businesses taking our courses can pursue certification with confidence.”Certified green businesses are recognized for their environmental stewardship, are listed in the County’s online Green Business Directory and the Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce website, have use of the program logo, benefit from various MCCC outreach efforts, and may be profiled on the County’s cable television programming. Previous programs have highlighted the efforts of Marriott International, Honest Tea, MCCC, Hallman Orthodontics, Reznick Group and Clean Currents.Businesses and organizations can benefit from the Green Business Certification Program regardless of their size, sector or where they are in their sustainability journey. The reasons organizations have given for becoming certified include enhancing their marketing opportunities, distinguishing themselves from competitors, cutting waste, saving money or responding to employee and consumer demands.
For more information about the Green Business Certification Program, go to the website at http://mcgreenbiz.org/. For information about Montgomery College’s Green Business Certification Crash Course, as well as other sustainability courses, go to “Green Training Programs” in their Schedule of Noncredit Classes at http://www.montgomerycollege.edu/wdce/WDCE_Spring2012_Catalogue/flipviewerxpress.html